General Home decor Home Improvement

Basement Family Room Makeover Plan

Hello Friends,

Today is the exciting launch of the Spring One Room Challenge. During the next six weeks, over 200 bloggers will renovate one room and share the good, bad and ugly along the way. For this challenge, we are renovating the basement family room and adjacent bonus room.

Basement Family Room and Adjacent Bonus Room Makeover Plan

If you don’t believe that blessings and curses can flow parallel, this project may just change your mind. You see, our basement was already finished and perfectly functionable, but man-oh-man, was it outdated. But then again, so was the master bath. And the 2019 plan was to redo the master bathroom and bedroom, then start on the basement.

But then, water.

Basement floor soaked from the AC pipe break | Basement Family Room Makeover | #oneroomchallenge #orc #BHGORC #betterhomesandgardens |

A pipe in the AC unit broke and soaked the carpet-covered floor in one of the rooms. And water wicked up the walls and up the furniture legs. So in the course of a few hours, perfectly good carpet was ripped up, wet drywall was cut away, and warped moldings were tossed to the curb. 

And just like that, the master bath remodel turned into a basement remodel. All in the course of one day and without one single solitary plan. I was so overwhelmed, I didn’t know where to start.

Where Do I Begin?

Happily, I did have the presence of mind to step back and start small.

Basement bathroom demo and rebuild | Basement Family Room Makeover | #oneroomchallenge #orc #BHGORC #betterhomesandgardens |

The first room to get a designed gutting and remodeling was the basement bathroom.  Since this would be a super dirty job, having just the one room underway allowed crews to make a huge mess across the floors in two other rooms without the stress of damage. Plus, pulling just the bathroom design together was manageable and gave me time to think about how the rest of the basement would fall into place.

If you are planning a bathroom remodel and would like to read about our six-week journey during the Fall 2018 ORC, please click here.

Modern Traditional Bathroom Makeover | Basement Family Room Makeover | #oneroomchallenge #orc #BHGORC #betterhomesandgardens |

But if you’re looking for a family room refinish, please read on for our exciting remodeling plans. 

Idea Room Number One

My first plan was to go all Pottery Barn. I just love the well-worn, kinda rustic, urban loft vibe in this photo. But I soon learned that recreating this kind of space while maintaining an open and airy feel would be easier said than done due to low natural light and basement ceilings that clock in at just under 8 feet. Yes, problems number one and two, low natural light and a shallow basement.

Family room makeover inspiration | Photo credit: Pottery Barn | Basement Family Room Makeover | #oneroomchallenge #orc #BHGORC #betterhomesandgardens |

Photo credit: Pottery Barn

That’s when I realized that I needed to integrate lighter colors and more light reflective colors and surfaces. And although the guys warned me that their movie-room-man-cave better not feel like they are sitting on an ice glacier, I just had to follow my instincts. 

 Idea Rooms Two and Three

And my instincts are loud and clear. I have to visually lift the ceiling and create a lighting situation to make the basement feel like it is open, airy and filled with natural light.

Then one day, I ran across this glorious room on Instagram.

Family room inspiration | Photo credit Undecorated Home | Basement Family Room Makeover | Basement Family Room Makeover | #oneroomchallenge #orc #BHGORC #betterhomesandgardens |

Photo Credit: Undecorated Home

And this room.

Family room inspiration | Photo credit: North of Broad | Basement Family Room Makeover | #oneroomchallenge #orc #BHGORC #betterhomesandgardens |

Photo Credit: North of Broad

The A-Ha Moment!

Suddenly, I knew where I was going with these two spaces. All of the limitations, like few windows, shallow ceilings, the location of load-bearing walls and orney guys nixing ideas, just weren’t the mountains they were a few short weeks ago.

Granted, the colors and textures will shift around, but the basic spirit of these rooms will be very clear in the Week 6 reveal.

Do I have a mood board to share today? No, sorry.

Family Room and Adjacent Bonus Room Plan

But here are some of the design ideas and DIYs that will make this space happen:

  1. Several outdated and discarded furniture pieces are coming together to form a 7-by-10-foot wall unit and painted this amazing Benjamin Moore color.

2. A vintage dining room set will be refinished in the yummy cappucino color in photo #2.

3. A vintage end table, coffee table, ottoman, buffet and cabinet unit will also be refinished. More on these colors later.

4. We will magically hide technology and build an 8-by-10-foot projection TV screen 30-feet apart.

5. We will visually lift low ceilings using a few structual, lighting and painting tricks.

6. And last, but not least, we will add fabrics via new furniture, rugs and DIY slip covers to create comfortable and durable surfaces. I’m still trying to find the exact fabrics, but here’s a peek at some contenders. I realize that a few of my bold-color maximalist friends may think, “Ugh, it looks like a man’s suit.” But please bear with me as this is a dynamic process and y’all know I’m hiding a few cards in my hand.

Colors and pattern play for the Family room Makeover | Basement Family Room Makeover | #oneroomchallenge #orc #BHGORC #betterhomesandgardens |

Please Join Us

I do hope you will join us as we defy the need for sleep and other basic necessities of life during the this 6-week rush to the finish line. It’s always loads of fun and ALWAYS worth the effort. 

How the Bonus Room Came Together

Our Hosts

And as always, we extend a special thanks to our gracious hosts, Calling It Home , One Room Challenge and Better Homes and Gardens. And invite you to enjoy over 200 more room renovations,  click One Room Challenge. #oneroomchallenge #ORC #betterhomesandgardens #bhgorc





  • Reply Nancy April 3, 2019 at 10:01 pm

    So excited!! Can’t wait to see each week!

    • Reply theChelseaProject April 3, 2019 at 10:17 pm

      Aww thanks friend. Can’t wait till it’s finished and you can come over for coffee and sweet yummies.

      • Reply Nancy April 4, 2019 at 7:11 am

        Sounds fun! Me too!

  • Reply Susanne Stewart April 3, 2019 at 10:14 pm

    I am so excited to watch your progress, these rooms are going to be amazing. Blessings come in all forms, don’t they? Cheering you on my friend!!

    • Reply theChelseaProject April 3, 2019 at 10:20 pm

      Thanks Suz… you are such a help. Appreciate you and your cheerleading more than you know.

  • Reply Tee April 4, 2019 at 9:24 am

    I’m so excited to see this space get transformed and learn through the process! I love your inspiration photos and your vision for this space! Can’t wait for week 6 for the reveals already! It’s going to go quickly but I’m sure you’ll pull off an amazing reveal. Good luck, my friend!

    • Reply theChelseaProject April 4, 2019 at 2:56 pm

      Thanks Tee! I was so excited to visit your post. You have all the fresh and new going on….Hope to steal —I mean–borrow….some ideas. LOL….

  • Reply Emy April 4, 2019 at 9:50 am

    Susie, I love your plans! I can’t wait to see how this turns out because my basement needs so much work and we’re hoping to start it at the end of the year!!

    • Reply theChelseaProject April 4, 2019 at 2:54 pm

      Thanks Emy! I’m so thrilled you will start your basement soon. I do have a few tips to share that I learned in this process. Maybe it will save you some time and money. Stay tuned. XO

  • Reply jhambel1 April 4, 2019 at 10:21 am

    This is so exciting! I love your swatches and inspiration rooms, looking forward to following!

    • Reply theChelseaProject April 4, 2019 at 2:53 pm

      Thanks a million!! I’m going swatch hunting again tomorrow…Right now, indecision is my closest friend. LOL..

  • Reply Mary Hunnicutt April 4, 2019 at 10:42 am

    Oh having water damage sucks…we have been through it, but i am excited to see how you refinish the room!

    • Reply theChelseaProject April 4, 2019 at 2:52 pm

      Hi Mary!! OH no, you had water, too? It’s amazing how little water it takes to upend everything in the house. Thanks so much for stopping by! I am working hard to get everything done… XO

  • Reply Jen @ Jenron Designs April 4, 2019 at 10:50 am

    You know I love everything that you do and I am so excited to see the space some together for you. I know it is a large undertaking but it is going to be so amazing my friend!!!!

    • Reply theChelseaProject April 4, 2019 at 2:50 pm

      Hey Jen and thanks so much! I need to come and empty out the PB Outlet next week. LOL… Right now, a section of one room is totally empty. Yikes.

  • Reply postcards from the ridge April 4, 2019 at 5:11 pm

    Ooooh! I can’t wait to see how your basement turns out. I love the bathroom project you did and I’m sure this will be just as pretty. And yes, great minds think alike with the light and airy look!

    • Reply theChelseaProject April 4, 2019 at 6:37 pm

      Thanks Angie.. Together, we will make it to our light and airy goals….LOL…

  • Reply Ola April 4, 2019 at 6:07 pm

    Susie my friend! Your plans for the space sounds so intriguing. I love all of the inspiration that you pulled for this project. I can’t wait to tune in next week.

    • Reply theChelseaProject April 4, 2019 at 6:39 pm

      Thanks Ola. You’re so sweet to me.. XO

  • Reply Casey April 5, 2019 at 9:15 am

    I love your inspiration – that caramel/rust colour is amazing 🙂 Can’t wait to follow along!

    • Reply theChelseaProject April 6, 2019 at 2:27 pm

      Hi Casey..we are making progess and anxious to share this week. The construction crews are officially done! Yay!!! Thanks so much for stopping by. 🙂

  • Reply Marie April 5, 2019 at 6:31 pm

    Yay, another ORC makeover! I ALWAYS enjoy yours, Susie and can’t wait to see those cards hidden up your sleeves 🙂

    • Reply theChelseaProject April 6, 2019 at 2:29 pm

      Hey Marie…if being the queen of indecision and returns makes my room flourish…then I’ll likely take the prize for best makeover. LOL… thanks hun…so good to have you stop by.

  • Reply Corinna - TheBohoAbode April 5, 2019 at 6:58 pm

    I love those fabric swatches! Those are gorgeous. And that caramel color is going to be perfect. I’m always mega inspired by Undecorated Home’s style. Can’t wait to see your space come together!

    • Reply theChelseaProject April 6, 2019 at 2:33 pm

      Hi Corinna.. I adore the room by Undecorated Home, but mine is already swinging a tad more Pottery Barn. But this is what will make mine an original. Right? Thanks so much for stopping by. If you happen to have the best source for jute and seagrass 9 by 12 size…please send your affiliate link right over. 🙂

  • Reply Leslea - A Heart Filled Home April 10, 2019 at 12:21 am

    So excited to see how this turns out! I love the fabrics that you chose!

    • Reply theChelseaProject April 10, 2019 at 6:47 pm

      Thanks so much, Leslea. I’m still trying to hammer down the final fabrics, but do love the masculine vibe the tweeds give this updo on the man cave.

  • Reply Lisa Shine Your Light April 11, 2019 at 7:34 am

    Okay WOW! I’m seriously so excited to see this all play out Susie! I love the direction you are going!! It’s going to be amazing! Heading over to check out the buffet right this instant.

    • Reply theChelseaProject April 11, 2019 at 9:03 am

      Thanks Lisa. You are the best!!

  • Reply Kamille Vee October 7, 2019 at 2:39 pm

    I’m loving your inspo for this one! 🙂

    • Reply theChelseaProject October 7, 2019 at 8:11 pm

      Thanks Kamille..I’ve been shopping fabrics all day. It’s like a puzzle, ins’t it?

    Thanks so much for your comment!

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